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Retail/restaurant coming to Lava Lofts?

An ordinance seeking permission to add retail space (PDF) to the Lava Lofts will be presented to the City of Richmond Planning Commission on April 1:

To amend Ord. No. 2011-20-32, adopted Mar. 14, 2011, which authorized the special use of the property known as 310 North 33rd Street for the purpose of the conversion of the existing building to a multifamily dwelling with up to 50 units, to additionally authorize principal commercial uses permitted on corner lots in the R-63 Multifamily Urban Residential District on the property, upon certain terms and conditions. (Mayor Jones – By Request) {Planning Commission – April 15, 2013}

Passage of this would make available 2,500 feet of retail space in the building. From the application:

Screen Shot 2013-03-28 at 10.48.45 AM
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Stephanie
Stephanie
7 years ago

Would love for this to happen, nothing better than walking down a flight of steps to get food and a beer.

Alex
Alex
7 years ago

Who needs this when they’ve already got Blue Wheeler? Blue Wheeler carries all of that and you can buy drugs from the guy who hangs out all day in front of the store to boot.

All kidding aside, this would be a nice option and would be a much classier alternative for folks on that side of the hill who want something besides chips and 40s.

Chimborazo Neighbor
Chimborazo Neighbor
7 years ago

No freakin way….the developer already broke zoning rules and bribed her way through the city hall approval process to develop this building with its current number of units. Now they want it commercial too?

D.O'K
D.O'K
7 years ago

A retail space would be great for the neighborhood! More activity on the street makes a safer street. I support this.

crd
crd
7 years ago

#4 Chimbo neighbor, do you live nearby? I don’t, I’m closer to 26th and Broad, but I’m guessing that parking would be a problem if it’s a successful restaurant. The idea of all these ‘walk to’ destinations is not the reality; there are a lot of people who drive to some places. Proper Pie is great but try parking on the surrounding streets – sure, they get some walkers, but judging by the amount of cars, they’re also getting a lot of people who drive there. I’d think it would be the same elsewhere. On the other hand, I also… Read more »

John Vetrovec
John Vetrovec
7 years ago

I live directly behind the building on 32nd St. Parking will be leased from Mt Carmel Church who owns the two vacant lots between 311 and 317. The parking will only be for the business and not for Lava Loft residents to use as that violates city tenets because it’s not R-63 on my block, rather R-7. Margaret of FHP broached me and my family about this before she went to CH Zoning with the proposal. I gave her my backing as I thought it was a reasonable request that would not impose on me or my neighbors. I look… Read more »

Chimborazo Neighbor
Chimborazo Neighbor
7 years ago

Did anyone notice the 70 patron part? That is what concerns me.

Several years ago, we met with zoning and lobbied to keep this building zoned for 30 units. We succeeded.

When the developer met with zoning and asked for a variance to make it a 50 unit building, they were denied.

The developer then hired our council ((which the same developer was negotiating to buy) all spoke in favor of this variance. The immediate neighbors spoke against it. We lost.

Our concern was, is, and will be PARKING. This building has none.

john
john
7 years ago

Viable dining, etc are a vital component of a vibrant neighborhood, even if it comes at the expense of parking.

Kev
Kev
7 years ago

70 patrons is a lot. I’d guess that Hill Cafe only seats 40, or that the Roosevelt or Dutch and Company seat around 50.

jamesmurph
jamesmurph
7 years ago

@chpn before you post certain topics, do you ask yourself, holy crap the comments on this thread will be amazing/ridiculous ?

BAC
BAC
7 years ago

Parking might be tight but come on, it can’t be that bad. Where I live on Marshall we have to deal with the daily commuters that park on our block and then take the bus to VCU. An inconvenience, yes, a pain, sort of, bad enough where I can’t deal with it, hardly. It’s a city, there are people. If it turns out to be as advertised this is great news.

Chimborazo Neighbor
Chimborazo Neighbor
7 years ago

So zoning laws are to be totally disregarded? Seriously? There are other options. The Chimbo Market is huge and just dying to be madeover. Plus ithas parking. It could house a couple of small eateries and a market.

bozatwork
bozatwork
7 years ago

I’m all for it if it means more local business in Church Hill, more foot traffic, more dining options and positive news coverage. Selfishly I would like it to highlight the slumlords of Marshall Street between Chimborazo and 33rd. The residential on that block is atrocious and the commercial opposite side of the street needs help. Block by block improvements are happening so we should encourage those making investments.

Jon Walle
Jon Walle
7 years ago

I thought every possible space had been rented. Am I missing something?

Lucky Canine
Lucky Canine
7 years ago

I live next to Lava Lofts and I support this project. While I always supported the rennovation of the building, I did oppose the density and lack of parking. Now that the rennovation is done and most of the units leased, I can say that my fears have proved unfounded. Parking has not been a big issue. Having more people around the area has been great. I think the commercial venture will be awesome. Marshall Street is supposed to be a business corridor and large sections of the street look like Beruit. We need an anchor on our end of… Read more »

joe
joe
7 years ago

You people that constantly whine about parking should walk around and look at places where once beautiful buildings were torn down for ugly surface parking. As others have said its the city. They have lots of ugly parking in the suburbs maybe you should relocate. You cant have everything.

Amy N-B
Amy N-B
7 years ago

This is totally exciting! I’ve noticed no change in parking issues since LL opened or WPA or Dutch and Co or any of the other businesses in the Eastern part of Church Hill/Marshall St. Further more this is a casual market concept which is something that we have needed for a long time in CH. We almost had it in the space that became Anthony’s and HOH tried. That said, the Wheeler has some great beer selections these days and the guys who run it have always been very nice.

Karen
Karen
7 years ago

Amy N-B, I would disagree with the changes in parking since WPA and Dutch & Co have opened (I live on 27th st) however, we are not complaining at all! We think it’s great to see so many people enjoying what that corner has to offer!!!!

P Mayo
P Mayo
7 years ago

‘The Chimbo Market is huge and just dying to be madeover. Plus ithas parking.’

Have you ever actually been inside? It’s not “dying” to be made over and I don’t imagine the owners are “dying” to sell.

Zookeeper
Zookeeper
7 years ago

We heard from a reliable source that the Urban Farmhouse is set to go to the Lava Lofts. If so, we are holding our breath waiting for it all to make it through the city process.

ray
ray
7 years ago

Urban Farmhouse expanding from busy Shockoe Slip to a an untested and relatively invisible location near Chimbo?

Seems like stretch to me but what do I know? Hope it happens!

Dave
Dave
6 years ago

A banner was placed on the Lava Lofts sign saying Urban Farmhouse was “opening soon”. Anyone have any more information about this? There is nothing on the Urban Farmhouse website that says anything about it. I for one, who lives at Chimbo & 33rd, am thrilled if this becomes a reality…

Lucky Canine
Lucky Canine
6 years ago

I am a neighbor of the Lava Lofts and what I was told by them is that the Urban Farmhouse has signed a lease. Very very exciting! Lava Lofts has been great for our block and I think Urban Farmhouse will make it even better. Urban Farmhouse currently operates 2 other locations – one in Shockoe Slip and another in Midlothian.

clay st resident
clay st resident
6 years ago

Happy to hear this is finally happening. Urban Farmhouse will be a great addition to the neighborhood!

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